Batman star Tom on trail of elephant poachers
TOUGH guy actor Tom Hardy plays violent criminals, gangster and cagefighters but nothing could prepare him for his elephant encounters in his latest TV show.
Hardy played notorious prisoner Charles Bronson in Bronson and Batman’s arch nemesis Bane in The Dark Knight Rises.
The 35-year-old also beefed up considerably for his role as Mixed Martial Arts fighter Tommy Riordan in 2011 movie Warrior.
But his latest ITV project, Poaching Wars With Tom Hardy, has seen him travel to Africa to uncover the truth about why the thieving of elephants and rhinos has reached crisis point.
In the two-part series, which gets under way on ITV1 Thursday night, he meets a bloke who’s training elephants to track poachers, so that the hunted become the hunter.
For one experiment, Tom agrees to hide in the bush to put the elephants’ skills to the test, and gets a fright when a big beast called Toshura finds him.
Afterwards, he said: “Wow, I’ve never been that close to an elephant before. I do a lot of things in my life, but I think that has genuinely just blown me right away.”
Tom, who starts his ourney in South Africa, said: “I have a love for Africa’s magnificent animals. So I find it hard to stomach the poaching crisis sweeping the continent and pushing these amazing animals to the edge of extinction.
“Without doubt the rhino and the elephant are facing extinction well within our lifetime and the war on poaching is being lost. I’m making these documentaries because it’s something practical I can do.”
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